The shift to electric vehicles
Mita Srinivasan
10X People

The shift to electric vehicles

There has been an increasing movement towards sustainable fleet management, especially for many organizations with large fleets. Deloitte estimates that electric vehicles (EV) will represent 10 percent of the total automotive market share by 2024. With the heightened need for delivery, operators from restaurants to supermarkets to courier companies are looking to reduce operating costs, says Adam Ridgway, Founder & CEO of One Moto Electric Vehicles to SME10x on what the shift to EV might mean

What would change the way people look at delivery - are there regulations in place?

Adam Ridgway: The last-mile industry is a hive of conversations, opinions, demands and concerns at the moment. It is a hyper-competitive marketplace with many needs requiring immediate attention from restauranteurs demanding a lower commission, to operators’ high overheads and customer acquisition, to request for government support with subsidies and reductions in rent. Supermarkets are under incredible strain to meet the demands of customers’ expectations of delivery times, and the logistics sector is troubled with the demand for fulfilment of online expectations.

We have a solution, but it will take a collective to work together, and this collaboration is the milestone mindset we need to find. ONE MOTO is working closely with the RTA to help find solutions and we have been the voice for many parties. Currently we’re working together to create something game-changing for this market and it’s an incredibly positive initiative.

Regarding regulations, yes there are many in place which we hurdled over an 18-month period, catapulting us as the first approved, certified and registered EV manufacturers in the UAE. We do have audacious goal for the region and my personal ask is to celebrate the mandates, vision and objectives of our leaders and place the United Arab Emirates at the forefront of EV manufacturing, smart cities and clean energy to generate an export opportunity from the UAE to the rest of the world. The UAE is not known for its manufacturing prowess, but with support from our leaders, the government, the initiatives and, of course a lot of luck, we’ll fulfil this by 2023.

You recently conducted a survey, tell us a bit more about what this research was about?

We wanted to understand the sustainable values of residents in the UAE, to gauge what is truly important and what information is simply assumed. We surveyed our customers and the people who work within these organisations and then of course using the power of our social media networks, we posed nine questions and asked for 60 seconds of their time. Our target market for this research was primarily the UAE, across all sectors and social backgrounds. The objective is to showcase through digital platforms and articles such as this what is important to the cross section of those of us living in the UAE.

We hoped with the findings our customers including delivery operators, supermarkets, courier companies will listen to what their customers hold true.

What messages jumped out at you from the results and why

We believe the future of successful companies are aligning the values of your business to those of your customers. The results of the survey certainly confirmed this. The fact that over 99 percent of individuals would choose to order from a sustainably focused business over a non-sustainable competitor was encouraging.

As we know, there are many ways of transitioning to a sustainable operation, and one of the highest overheads is transportation. It isn’t a simple shift, there are certain considerations when switching a fleet from petrol to electric, but what many don’t realise is how efficient the transition is, saving operators the cost of the vehicle in just 12 months. For those looking to continue leasing their vehicles from third party operators, it offers up two further considerations: Can I reduce my operational costs whilst maintaining customer satisfaction? And how can I encourage my transport suppliers to switch to electric? Then of course, the question follows, if we don’t do it now, will we continue with a price war with our competition?

This is only sustainable for so long. While the answer of focusing on profit from the bottom line becomes conclusive, the questions still need to be asked. One of the questions that jumped out was regarding the switch to EV ownership for their next vehicle. 39 percent would make a 100 percent shift while 14.3 percent are halfway to making the shift to an EV fleet.

The market’s need to change relies on two major factors. The first is charging convenience. It requires commitment at a governmental level to install chargers, offer greater incentives and the investment for this is considerable. However, an important point to note: the ONE MOTO electric fleet of motorcycles, delivery vans, e-bikes and scooters, can all be charged at any 3-pin socket and have swappable batteries. So, there is no need for this infrastructure, investment and it makes the move an easier consideration.

The second is the cost of ownership for EV cars - many would like to ’switch’ to electric but don’t have the financial capacity. As we continue to approach a milestone in EV adoption, the cost of ownership will continue to decrease. Yet these costs aren’t a consideration with our fleet, we have several ways of facilitating this so we welcome conversations with your readers on how we can help the transition.

According to Adam Ridgway, “We all have a wonderful opportunity to make small changes which inject huge differences to the UAE and the world.”